tv Special Report With Bret Baier FOX News May 12, 2011 6:00pm-7:00pm EDT
some are calling a political liability in to an asset. and does the u.s. postal service need a bail-out? live from the studio in washington, this is "special report." geng, i'm bret baier. the heads of several major oil companies were summoned to capitol hill today to discuss industry tax incentives and riding energy prices. doug mckelway is on capitol hill with look at the implications. >> gasoline around $4 mark, threatening the economic recovery and the political ambitions, the democratic controlled finance committee trotted out the ceos of the five biggest oil companies today. if it looked like deja vu, democrats did this in 2005, the last time gas was $4 a gallon. it prompted republican orrin hatch to respond with this prop? >> who is the horse and who is the dog? i think we both know. i know who the horse's ass is.
put it this way. i shouldn't have said that. >> the oil executives whose companies are swimming in record profits made convenient targets for democrats who plan to introduce legislation next week to strip them of $21 billion of tax subsidiaries at a time when the republicans are moving to slash federal spending. >> one of my colleagues suggested that this hearing is nothing more than a dog and pony show. well, you would have an easier time to convince people a unicorn flew in the hearing room that the oil company need taxpayer subsidiaries. that is the real fairy tale. >> the currently contemplated changes to the tax rules would limit the resources companies like b.p. have to invest. not only four conventional emergency production but in new and emerging technologies like wind, fuels and solar. >> while admitting to the record profit, executives point out they pay the record
taxesf more than other highly profitable companies. >> the worldwide effective tax rate for our industry in 2010 was 40%. higher than the u.s. statutory rate of 35% and rate of manufacturers of 26.5%. >> executives deflected numerous attempts to tie them to $4 a gallon gasoline. saying that the crude oil prices in the middle east and commodity trading determine gas prices they returned fire at the democratic accusers saying there is plenty of domestic oil if only we could drill it. >> we have over 400 leases in alaska that are idle, waiting for permission to move forward. >> put us back to work and give us access to the land. put people back to work. >> that exchange offered max baucus to offer something for oil executive saying we'll give more leases to you if you give up your tax subsidy so far no, deal. >> bret: thank you. crude oil futures added 76 cents overnight to settle at
$98.97. gasoline added 2 cents. the national average is $3.9 # a gallon. high prices at the pump, said to be a leading factor in increase of retail sales for a tenth straight month. sales increased half a percentage point. number of people applying for unemployment fell in what was the steepest weekly decline since february 2010. the stocks were up today. dow gained 66. s&p 500 gained 6-1/2. nasdaq added 18. >> bret: former governor mitt romney gave a speech on what many are calling the most vullerrable issue heading to the 2012 race. carl cameron looks at the balancing act between opposition to healthcare law
and his romney care. >> mitt romney has been on defense for implementing state house plan in massachusetts. romney first attacked president obama plan. >> our plan was a state solution to a state problem. his is a power-grab by the federal government. >> parts of obamacare were bottled on romney's plan but he refuses to apologize for distance himself from that. >> it wouldn't be honest. i did what i believed was right for the people of the state. >> two months ago he tried to neutralize the issue admitting the plan was perfect. >> it wasn't perfect. some things worked, some things didn't. some things i'd change. >> hours before romney's latest speech, carney had already taken notice. >> governor romney seems to be running away from some of the goal of his own law. >> in in fact, in the 2008 white house run, romney boasted about his record. >> half of my uninsured are
insured and i'm proud of what we've done. >> more than half of the bay state doctors are not accepting new patients and waiting time are worse according to the massachusetts medical society. new hampshire poll said 14% felt that romney's healthcare record would make them more likely to vote for him. double that, 29%, said it would make them less likely. deliberate comments like from the current president are not meant to help romney with conservatives. >> i agree with mitt romney. who said he is proud of what he accomplished on healthcare in massachusetts. >> in 2006, "wall street journal" op-ed said give romney credit as a rare republican to discuss healthcare. today's op-ed in the "wall street journal" said when the 2012 campaign focused on healthcare and the entitlement state, on that question mr. romney is compromised and not credible. after romney's speech, rick santorum issued a statement saying romney care and obama care infringe on freedom and
exponentially increase the healthcare cost burden. romney said he would repeal obamacare and replace with array of market and tax code reform promoting private insurance, including across state line. medical liability reform and more. >> romney knows like a boomerang the healthcare plan will come back at him. he concedeed as a fact what was once seen as an asset is now a liability. >> the all-star panel will tackle it as well. thank you. texas republican congressman ron paul is accepted to announce friday he is running for president. sources tell fox that paul will make the announcement to a few hundred supporters outside. >> lawmakers on both sides of the ail raise concerns over proposed white house rule for federal contractors and the political doevation. administration officials insist that the guidelines are necessary. wendell goler has the story. >> hearing of the house oversight and small business
committee, republicans aired complaints about draft proposal that federal contractor pros pose political contrabutions. >> dog it ahead and have the information out there can serve no other purpose. than to be politically motivated. >> contractors will be protected. the agency may consider only the factors that are set out in the solicitation. nothing more, nothing less. >> still, bipartisan opposition to the proposal is growing. democratic senator claire mccaskill joining joe lieberman in letter to the president that warned, "requiring businesses to disclose their political activity when making an offer risks injecting politics to the contracting process." oversight committee chairman darrell issa took a more sperm strike at mr. obama telling gordon. >> we're now talking about chicago hardball politics that could clearly lead to chilling effect on contributions. >> white house press secretary
jay carney ignored the chicago dig and challenged the premise. >> i'm not sure when it became a bad word or idea. disclosure used to be something that republicans supported very much. >> aides feel disclosure is needed because of the supreme court ruling that removed corporate political spending a year ago. but the differences on the ruling are so wide the federal election commission hasn't agreed on rules implementing it. some advocacy groups are asking mr. obama to break with tradition and name the republican members. gordon says they are stuck with proposal requirements. >> lobbying is not taken in account in the selection of contractors but it's required to be submitted publicly available. >> it exempts union with great many grants to the federal
government. >> administration officials point out that the draft order isn't final. because it's not final gordon refuses to say if he supports it as it stands. >> thank you mitch mcconnell says the need to raise the debt creeling is a major important for republicans and democrats to come together. as negotiations continue, chief washington correspondent jim angle has a progress report. >> just after the prayer breakfast, republicans met privately about what it will take to pass increase in debt ceiling. mitch mcconnell says republicans will not approve one without substantial spending cut ace tached. >> the democrats wouldn't pass clean debt ceiling. >> they agree that cuts will be in the trillions, not billions to pass increase in debt ceiling.
>> we are in a hole. we have to stop digging. >> they called for spending cut for with the years and change in medicare to increase the deficit by tens of trillions in the coming years. >> we know what the options are. the only question remaining is what will we pick up and agree to on a bipartisan basis? >> both made clear republicans will not vote for tax increases, though mcconnell said there was discussion today of tax reform. meaning ending tax deductions, not raising rate. >> an area with widespread agreement we need to tackle is comprehensive tax reform. >> white house spokesman jay carney said they told reports the same thing he told democrats the day before. >> we all need to work together to find common ground. to achieve a goal we all
share. serious debt reduction. >> several senators addressed the view directly to the president, which carney described this way. >> the president listened atenttively to the republican senators and what they had to say about deficit reduction and the need to do this. >> after today, said one republican, there can be to doubt in the president's mind exactly what it will take to win republican support for an increase in the debt ceiling. bret? >> jim, thanks. >> bret: the senate ethics committee referred the case of former republican nevada senator john ensign to the justice department and federal election commission. they said he may have broken federal law. ensign's lawyer he is confident they will find they complied with the law and ensign resigned may 3. president obama blames the high unemployment rate with
private sector. and next, the latest attempt to drive libya's leader from power. delicious gourmet of gravy. and she agrees. with fancy fest gravy lovers, your cat can enjoy the delicious, satisfying taste of gourmet gravy every d. fay feast, the best ingredient is love. host: could switching to geico or more on car insurance?
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>> bret: defense secretary robert gates says he and secretary of state hillary clinton feared photos showing usama bin laden's corpse may be altered and provoke a backlash against american troops. gates says that is one reason he opposed releasing the images. the top republican on the senate armed services committee, john mccain said today, enhanced interrogation techniques played no role in finding the terror leader. >> it was not torture, inhayne treatment of detainees that got us the mayor leads that enabled our intelligence community to find ratk usama bin laden. >> bret: meantime, fox obtained a letter by senators
informing president obama after successful bin laden operation, the administration should drop legal action against those who interrogated detainees. they wrote they found it "extremely troubling that your attorney general is continuing to pursue charges against some of them for their actions during the previous administration." the state department is backing a resurrected deal by the gulf cooperation counsel that offered yemeni president ali abdullah saleh a chance to name his own successor, avoid prosecution and step down in 30 days. police driving the drive off thousands of protesters in two cities today killed two people and wounded nearly four dozen others. the head of libya's opposition says muammar gaddafi is a legitimate target for rebel and naid toe forces but insisted gaddafi would be tried if arrested. earlier today, they pounded the compound in tripoli and three other sites. david lee miller is live in
tripoli with the latest. hello, david lee? >> airstrikes in the capital are becoming more frequent and more intense. the ones early this morning according to libyan officials claim three lives on the gaddafi compound. two of those were libyan journalists working oba documentary. they took foreign jurge hysts to the see scene. to show us there were no military activity but what he saw raised more questions thans as. >> the airstrike took place near the children playground. you see the crater left by an explosion in the middle of the night. the crater filled with water and debris. there are here today, 100 or so human shields, demonstrators to live under the compound and prevent a nato attack. you can see the woman will not
let us move further in this direction. they will stop our camera. and we will stop here. so as not to create an incident. but there appears to be some type of underground bunker there. we are told this is not a military facility but we're not allowed to take pictures there. the chant for muammar gaddafi claiming that nato is responsible for killing civilians, not the government. despite repeated airstrike at the come pound the human shield we interviewed said they would be there tonight and tomorrow night and be there until the conflict is over. they are prepared to sacrifice their lives for muammar gaddafi. the regs have taken control of the airport in misurata, major development and are headed in
the direction of tripoli, 120 miles away. for the capital, it's becoming increasingly isolated militarily and diplomatically. the rebels today were meeting with authorities in the united kingdom. tomorrow they will be in washington to meet with officials there. bret? >> david lee miller live in tripoli early friday morning. thank you very much. one of the reactor at the japan stricken power plant is more damaged than previously thought and it could complicate plans to bring the facility to a cold shutdown in nine months. a 12-mile no entry zone is still in place around the plant. the march 11 earthquake and tsunami left 25,000 people dead or missing. forced 117,000 from their homes. now vulnerable is the u.s. to cyber attacks? that is coming up. how the state department is trying to protect american diplomats from attacks. [ female announcer ] it's red lobster's
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president obama has proposed two-year extension to f.b.i. director robert mueller's term that, pyres september 4. he praised the service saying the continue wation and stability is critical. while some on capitol hill favor extension, others are voicing concern. iowa senator chuck grassily says the ten-year term limit is important safeguard against improperly political innuance. as the united states is dependent on interconnected technology, the more devastating the potential fall -- potential fall-out from a cyber attack. catherine herridge has a look at the effort to make the infrastructure as sound as the physical infrastructure.
>> officials have a culmination of work and statement noting that the administration responded to congress' call for input on cyber security legislation that the nation needs. we look forward to engaging with congress as they move forward on this issue. >> the overall goal of the proposal is better protect people against cyber crime and safeguard infrastructure and the federal government computers and networks. >> the white house proposal has national data reach reporting. when the websites or other internet sites are affected they're required to notify them of breach. it seems to standardize penalties for computer criminals establishing the
mandtory sentiments. the issue is compliance, bipartisan alliance including lieberman, collins and carter. d carper. some argue that a heavy-handed approach from the federal government would be difficult to implement. 50 proposals have been put forward on the hill so the competing interest have to be worked out by the end of the year. >> catherine herridge live in the washington bureau. the state department developed construction technology to withstand blast from roadside bombs. it was recently tested in new mexico. we got a firsthand look. >> the mock-up in the kirkland air force base in new mexico is about to be rocked to the core. >> this is a credible born i.e.d. and realistic setback.
based on a history of people attacking the industry. >> they gave fox exclusive look inside the building. >> in the event of the bombing, the history has shown the number one shard of industry is shard of glass. number one cause of death is pancaking on top of people. testing done here is on the retrofitting against that. >> for example, it's designed to catch the glass in front like a baseball mitt. the wall like material to act like glue. >> we look at small arm attack and explosions that are one of the principal way for people who would attack us. >> the excessive result of the blast test are classified. you can see the buildin buildins still standing and windows are
gone. the genesis the al-qaeda 199 # twin bombing of embassies in tanzania and kenya that killed more than 220 people. the mission is duel phased. >> metric is simple. at the end of the day, people are safe. >> it's never-ending race between terror technology and protection. for people despite the threat have a passion for foreign service. >> they volunteer to go to the location and put forth the policy of the u.s. government. i respect the work they do. >> at kirkland air force base, alicia acuna. >> outgoing government official is taking heat over her next job. infamous white house party crasher targets a new career. ever wish vegetables didn't taste so vegetably?
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>> bret: now some fresh pickings from the political grapevine. president obama talked about government layoff in economic town hall wednesday and said, "there have been huge layoffs of government workers" at the federal level, state level, local level. teacher, police officers, firefighters, social workers have taken it in the chin over the last several months. according to the labor
statistic worker, federal bureau added 11,000 jobs in the first quarter. state employee experienced job loss of half a percept or 25,000. local employees lost 35,000 jobs or quarter percept. analyst from the cato institute says even if the claims about the government layoff were true, and it isn't, why would he assume that the government workers would be protected class immune from the career realities that every private worker is experiencing in our sluggish economy? federal communication commissioner meredith baker announced she is resigning to become comcast, nbc universal senior vice president of governmental affairs. four months ago she approved that in 2009. and she was approved of one of the members among five on the board. comcast says it did not begin
discussion with baker about possible job until after the transaction closed. alleged party crasher saleh is trying to break in music industry. the title "bump it" is out. she said she was irspireed to sing after oprah winfrey once told her, she had an amazing voice. however, oprah's camp now denies that they ever discussed salahi vocal abilities in brief meeting backstage in washington. you may remember that earlier in year, salahi was kicked out of celebrity rehab for not actually having an addiction. the u.s. postal service posted second quarter net loss of $2 billion and failed to turn a profit in four years. the question now asked is does the postal service need a bail-out? james rosensthat story. >> stop, wait a minute, mr. postman. if the u.s. postal service keeps hemorrhaging money like
this, $7 billion in red ink per year with looming unfolded liability, mr. postman will default on the treasury department loans. >> on the wrong end of the information revolution. >> usps handled 170 billion pieces of mail last year, $10 trillion in payments between people and companies. get this, the friendly neighborhood postman is not a government employee. nor are the postal workers who post the stamps. the workforce receives zero taxpayer fund and survives on revenue from goods and services. the real problem is set of three laws imposed on the postal service. which congress balked at resending.
>> there is enough money in that fund to pay all of our existing retireries from now until the day of the debt. >> thigh are required by law to deliver mail six days a week. cut out saturday and save another $3 billion a year. $7 billion that the postal service widely agreed to overpaid in fund but having a tough time getting back from uncle sam. imagine that. address the three issues and no one would talk about bailing out the u.s. mail. >> save $11.5 billion in operating costs and cash flows. that would turn the substantial losses to substantial profits. >> in the meantime, they are eliminating 7,500 jobs and postal services are being offered in alternate location from office depot to gun shoppe in washington, james rosen, fox news. >> my colleague greta van
susteren is live in north korea with reverend franklin graham. she is getting around the country under the watchful eye of government minders. here is a clip. >> i can see how many people come with us. the country has been gracious to us. we don't wonder around with complete freedom. but they have been gracious to let us walk the field. see how the it's being used. >> tune in tonight on the record, live from north korea. congress takes aim at oil company tax breaks subsidiaries but will it have an impact on rising price of gasoline? the fox all-stars weigh in after the break. hey susie, why don't you use this ?
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well, you'd have an easier time convincing the american people that a unicorn just flew in the hearing room than the big oil companies need taxpayer subsidiaries. >> despite current debate, few businesses pay more in taxes than the gas companies. we are ready to invest. not a question of looking for incentives. pus us back to work. open up, give us access to the land. put our people back to work. >> we have over 400 leases in alaska that are sitting idle waiting for permission to move forward. >> as gasoline prices hover around $4. $3.98 at this point. they invited the ceos to congress. they are trying to take away incentive and subsidy from the company of $21 billion.
the back and forth continueed through the day. about what that would do and would it lower gasoline prices at all? fred barnes from "weekly standard." a.b. stoddard from the hill. syndicated columnist charles krauthammer. fred, your thoughts on the hearing and the back and forth? >> i can answer that question. would it lower gasoline prices? no. any increase of the taxes on the oil company. the more you tax something, the less you get of it. that would prize the price up the real problem is supply and demand. we know the supply is artificially low in the united states of the restriction of where you drill. demand is higher. we have global recovery there is premium in the price because of the turmoil in middle east.
they export oil and the dollar continues to be weak and getting weaker all the time. oil is denominated in dollars so the same dollars get you less oil. all the time. one more thing. this hearing was completely unserious. no legislation will pass. the person that explained it the best in one word senator mary landrieu democrat of louisiana who said the whole thing was laughable. it was laughable. how the senators can keep a straight face. they are good actors and they keep a straight face through the charade. >> oil companies make big targets but defended themselves saying incentive for research and development and say they pay record taxes, more than highly profitable companies, though they enjoy the record profits.
what about the back and forth? >> the oil companies when you become -- fred is right. this is almost to the point the senators and the five ceos on a first name basis. you think they'll start calling each other chuck and fred. this is so common. when you become ceo of a company, w the goodny bag that you get. generous signing bonus up before congress once or twice a year. every time there is a hurricane, oil spill or spike in the gas prices. they will go after the profits. ceo salaries and everything. when the oil executive threatens the job loss that cares everybody. we are in a tough economy. fred is right. democrats don't have the vote to take away the tax break. at the same time, powerful
message. the democrats know that. they don't need legislation to call up to the hill and they don't need legislation to keep it out as message. theme in re-elect. the fact they continue to be subsidized is a problem. the democrats keep up the message because it resonates. >> i could care one way or the other about the subsidiaries of the hearing. they are disgrace. a show trial. for two reasons. number one, it's about the high price of gas. indicated by fred, zero effect on price of gas.
set by recovery of the dollar. the risk premium as a result of the instability. added on in the financial market. all those are the reasons. imposing attacks will not affect the price one way or the other. the second reason it's contemptible, the democrats are claiming they will use money to redice deficit. the deficit is $1.5 trillion. you would go from $1.5 trillion to $1.498 trillion. or put it in way, not even a rounding error. another way is you could collect the tax annually for 100 years. it wouldn't cover two months of the current deficit. 100 year, two months.
they want to close the deficit instead of attacking oil companies. a farce from beginning to end. >> bret: some people say you have to start somewhere. two months over 100 years? >> if you pant the money say we want $2 billion a year. you can argue about the utility of the subsidy. i could live without it. the reason of the hearing has nothing to do with what they discussed. >> last word. >> if you want tax break from the oil company, you pass a budget. democrats didn't do it last year. they will not do it for 2012. pass a budget, negotiate the part in it. you could pass this if you gave the republicans and angry democrats something in return for it. democrats won't do it. that's why they were merely
posturing. >> it could be in file package. >> after the break, they weigh in on romney care and impact on romney's aspiration. an accident doesn't have to slow you down. introducing better car replacement, availablonly with liberty mutual auto insurance. if your car is totaled, we give you the money for a car one model year newer. to learn more, visit us today. responsibility. what's your policy? oh, bayer aspirin? i'm not having a heart attack. it's my back. it works great f pain. [ male announcer nothing's proven to relieve pain better than extra strength bayer aspirin. it rushes relief to the site of pain. feel better? yeah. thanks for the tip.
a lot of pundits around the nation say i should stand up and say the whole thing was a mistake, a bone-headed idea and i should just admit it, it was a mistake and walk away from it. i precede a lot of folks who did that it would be good for me politically. there is only one problem with that. it wouldn't be honest. i did what i believed was right for the state. >> bret: governor mitt romney talking about
healthcare, saying he'd repeal president obama's healthcare law first thing in office. he said his plan was a state solution to a state problem. obama care is a power grab. how is that playing across the spectrum? a.b.? >> mitt romney is getting beat up from the left and the right. the left saying it's romney care. and charles recommended what he do, admit it was error. he did not. he doubled down and wouldn't apologize and is proud of what he did. this was not a speech intended to change anybody's mind. a why to lay down a marker as he moves down the path in nomination fight he can say i've already addressed this. he wants the issue to go away.
>> i commend him on passing the plan in the first place and the pose he proposed that has elements that are left out of obamacare. tort reform, being able to purchase the health insurance across state lines. all of that is fine. he had a chart comparing his plan and obamacare. his is superior. but the problem is it's beyond the point. the attack on him is over romney care. when you do a chart comparing romney care and obama care, a lot of similarities. that is a problem that romney has thul getting around. not sure he answered it. i'm not sure it will do the liability. >> parent of "wall street journal" had scathing editorial.
he said romney is compromised and not credible. >> the massachusetts plan failed the idea was everybody would be insured. the tost would go down. but they haven't. it's gone up. there are all these things that romney may not have intended. there is a way out if he said i paut plan in place. some favored an individual mandate and we know now it's failed. we have a test in labtary, massachusetts. now i'm proposing something different. romney had broad approach and now it's a free market approach but he can't defend both of them. the new approach and the massachusetts approach are different. we have to explain how we got
from romney carrie, defending to what he is proposing now. >> the white house mentioned 1994 statement where he seemed to advocate a national mandate. he is saying it's state solution to a state problem. he says it should be national mandate. >> he was quoted in 2007 on "meet the press" where he said something similar how it should be tried on a national level. the mandate approach. there were conservatives if the mandate back then. but not anymore. now no matter how much they have a new plan. the grass roots aren't buying them. he can't get by them to win the nomination. >> you think it's devastating. >> his plan is not going to make anybody happy. the strategy the last man
standing. he will have the most delegates at the end. not win anyone over, but just to win. >> may 12, is he the nominee? >> 50/ 50 >> that is all you give me? >> i don't think he's the nominee. >> me neither. >> stay tuned for another lesson in television reporting, when the stop talking. i'm chef michael, and my dog bailey and i love to hang out in the kitchen. you love the aroma of beef tenderloin, don't you? you inspired a very special dog food. [ female announcer ] chef michael's canine creations. chef inspired. dog desired. i can. because hertz is giving one away. along with other cool stuff. go to hertz.com for details.
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i was in sun valley idaho in december. it was actually christmas eve. i saw arnold with his oldest daughter on the street. in fact, jaywalking, if you will, in front of my car. no maria in sight. that's neither here nor there. send it back to you in hollywood. >> bret: that is neither here nor there. thanks for inviting us into your home tonight. that's it for "special report." fair, balanced, and you unafraid. tune in for on the record tonight. greta van susteren live from north korea. that will be a show to watch. see you. captions by closed captioning services >> jon: a gunman bursts on to an army base and heads to a c